Obesity in South Auckland

Experts claim that healthy eating programs need to be reintroduced after obesity rates rapidly increased in South Auckland. The national adult obesity rate of NZ is up to 29 percent in the 2011-2012 survey, an increase of 26 percent from five years prior. In other districts however, youth obesity rates also rose drastically from 16% to 30% in those age 15-24. Moreover, these survey reveal that Australians have been consuming less fruits and vegetables as well.

Obesity is a factor in developing diabetes and heart disease. Dr. Brandon Orr-Walker, the clinical head of endocrinology at Middlemore Hospital in South Auckland finds the increasing obesity in youths extremely alarming. He claims that by the time the generation will reach their 50s many of today’s lawmakers will be old or gone. But it is their duty to create laws protecting the future’s health. The government should be forthcoming in laws creating a protective regulatory environment in nutrition and non-communicable diseases like diabetes. Orr-Walker pushes for the reintroduction of these programs that were discontinued when the National Party of Australia came to power.

These programs, if reactivated includes bans on the sale of unhealthy foods at school and other changes. However Health Minister Tony Ryall claims that the funding will be focused on maternal and newborn nutrition, where it is the most effective.

SMC-obesity-final-A4

This infographic, found from the science media centre of NZ is very effective in illustrating the growing obesity issue.

-Jenny Zhuo

Sources:

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/health/news/article.cfm?c_id=204&objectid=10879441

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